If you will recall from my previous blog post, Speed Cleaning (get the book) is a maintenance system for keeping your home neat, tidy, and presentable at all times. It assumes that you will spend a minimum of one hour, one day per week on this simple house cleaning system.
Now for this system to work smoothly, we must lay down some rules. Thirteen rules to be precise.
1. Make every step count
Once around the room. Don’t backtrack. Carry everything you need in your apron.
2. Use the right tools
- First, invest in a cleaning apron Check out this apron.
- Then, your rags. You will need the proper rags. Different rags for different jobs.
- Finally, your cleaning products. Don’t fret, you won’t need much. I find the simpler the cleaning product, the better the results. You can get a lot accomplished with just soap and water.
3. Work from the top to the bottom
This is the first and last rule of professional cleaning. Left to right, top to bottom. You will begin to the right of the door and work your way around the room clockwise.
4. If it isn’t dirty, don’t over clean it
When it is clean, its clean. Never confuse this with skipping, skimping, or cutting corners. Examine your surface. You may only have to deal with a few fingerprints on a cabinet. It makes no sense cleaning the entire surface if it is not necessary. Work smarter, not harder.
5. Don’t rinse or wipe a surface before its clean
Resist the temptation to rinse or wipe just to see if you’re done. Learn to look through your cleaning. Experience will teach you when your dirt has dislodge itself from the surface. Otherwise, you may have to start all over again.
6. Don’t keep working after its clean
Rinse, wipe, dry. You are done. Move on.
7. If what you’re doing isn’t going to work, shift to a different cleaner or tool
Don’t bring a knife to a gun fight. If what you are doing is not getting the job done, stop. Scrubbing harder with inadequate tools or product will only result in wasted energy. Step up your cleaning game. Learn to anticipate what you are going to need before you start. Remember: work smarter, not harder.
8. Keep your tools in good, working order
Take care of your stuff. You invested money in your clean system. Use it properly. Keep it clean. Follow the instructions on the labels. Replace items when necessary.
9. Repetition makes for smoother moves
A place for everything and everything in its place. Always put everything back in the same place throughout your clean. You don’t want to be groping around looking for stuff or wasting time backtracking because you forgot a tool or product on the other side of the house.
10. Pay attention
If you are mindful of what you are trying to achieve, you will achieve it.
11. Keep track of your time
Don’t get lost in the weeds. Keep moving. You will be whipping through your home in not time. I promise you, you can clean a lot of house in one hour.
12. Use both hands
This step takes a little concentration but it goes without saying that if you are using only one hand, only one half of the work is getting done.
13. If there is more than one cleaner, work as a team
If you have help, you could work in the same room together or in the case of our cleaning company, we split up covering more ground. Just be clear on who is doing what so that there is no confusion. Eyes on the prize!
I will be discussing the tools and supplies you will want to have to make this Speed Cleaning system work for you.